Exploiting the time-reversal operator for adaptive optics, selective focusing, and scattering pattern analysis

Phys Rev Lett. 2011 Dec 23;107(26):263901. doi: 10.1103/PhysRevLett.107.263901. Epub 2011 Dec 22.


We report on the experimental measurement of the backscattering matrix of a weakly scattering medium in optics, composed of a few dispersed gold nanobeads. The decomposition of the time-reversal operator is applied to this matrix and we demonstrate selective and efficient focusing on individual scatterers, even through an aberrating layer. Moreover, we show that this approach provides the decomposition of the scattering pattern of a single nanoparticle. These results open important perspectives for optical imaging, characterization, and selective excitation of nanoparticles.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Gold / chemistry*
  • Lasers
  • Metal Nanoparticles / chemistry*
  • Microspheres
  • Optical Phenomena*
  • Time Factors


  • Gold